Open Policy Issues

The table below list the open technical and policy issues related to SMRs and non-light water reactors that the NRC has been tracking to resolution since 2010. This list was originally included in SECY-10-0034 and has been updated periodically to show the current status of the issues. The NRC will to continue to update this list as needed.

Issue Title/Applicability Status References

Security and Safeguards Requirements for SMRs

Applicability: SMRs and non-LWRs

On December 14, 2016, NEI submitted a white paper on a "Proposed Consequence-Based Physical Security Framework for Small Modular Reactors and Other New Technologies." This paper "... proposes an approach to security that considers the enhanced safety and security incorporated into these designs and provides a more effective and efficient means to protect the public health and safety." In the transmittal letter, NEI requests that "... the NRC establish regulatory positions on this approach and the associated policy and technical issues."

Disposition: The NRC met with NEI on May 3, 2017, to discuss the review of their submittal. The NRC provided feedback on NEI's white paper in July 2017, and met with NEI again on October 12, 2017. The staff prepared a draft white paper to facilitate stakeholder interactions. The staff discussed this white paper with NEI and other stakeholders on December 13, 2017. The staff considered stakeholder input and prepared SECY-18-0076, "Options for Physical Security For Light-Water Small Modular Reactors And Non-Light-Water Reactors," which was sent to the Commission on August 1, 2018. On November 19, 2018, the Commission directed the staff to initiate a limited-scope revision to regulations and guidance related to physical security for advanced reactors and approved, subject to edits, a related rulemaking plan.  The staff prepared a regulatory basis which was published in the Federal Register on July 16, 2019, for public comment.  The staff engaged with stakeholders throughout the development of the draft proposed rule by holding 11 public meetings, issuing 3 versions of preliminary proposed rule language, and requesting public feedback.

The staff provided the draft proposed rule to the Commission for Consideration in SECY-22-0072, "Proposed Rule: Alternative Physical Security Requirements for Advanced Reactors (RIN 3150-AK19)" August 2, 2022. 

SECY-22-0072  (8/02/2022)

Regulatory Basis (07/16/2019)

SECY-18-0076 (08/01/18)

Staff Draft White Paper (11/29/17)

NEI White Paper (12/14/16)

SECY-11-0184 (12/29/11)

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